WASHINGTON, April 27 (Reuters) - Former President Bill Clinton will join President Barack Obama on Sunday to raise money for the Democrat's re-election campaign, the first time the two U.S. political heavyweights have campaigned together in 2012.

Obama and Clinton have had a sometimes strained relationship since the former Illinois senator beat the former president's wife Hillary Clinton, now secretary of State, for the 2008 Democratic presidential nomination.

The former president remains very popular with Democratic supporters, however, and Obama's campaign is eager to get his fundraising support for the 2012 election.

The two men will appear together at a fundraising reception and then a dinner, both hosted by Terry McAuliffe, a close friend of the Clintons. Five hundred people will attend the reception, with tickets starting at $1,000, and 80 are to attend the dinner, for which tickets cost $20,000, the official said.

The money will go to a joint fund to support Obama's re-election campaign, the Democratic National Committee and several state Democratic parties.

Clinton's profile in the Obama campaign appears to be rising. On Friday, the campaign released a video of Clinton praising Obama for his decision to approve the raid that resulted in the death of Osama bin Laden. (Reporting By Jeff Mason; editing by Todd Eastham)

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